THE MYTON Hospices’ front line staff have been thanked by the charity’s chief executive for their ongoing efforts in the fight against Covid-19.
CEO Ruth Freeman praised the dedication of staff working for the charity across Coventry and Warwickshire throughout the pandemic.
Doctors and nurses at the hospice have played a vital role in Myton’s response to coronavirus. The way they work has changed in response to the pandemic but their primary focus remains the same – to provide care and support for terminally ill patients, and their families, in their inpatient beds and in the community.
The charity has enhanced its Myton at Home service in Rugby and south Warwickshire to support patients identified as being in the last days or weeks of life whose preferred place of death was at home. The service now includes a registered nurse and the team care for people in their own homes 8am to 8pm, seven days a week.
The Inpatient Unit at Warwick Myton Hospice has been temporarily handed over to South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust (SWFT) until September due to a reduction in Myton’s staffing levels because of the crisis. Rather than the unit standing empty Myton wanted to support SWFT by offering it to them temporarily to aid with their response to the pandemic.
Myton staff have been transferred to Coventry Myton Hospice to maximise the number of inpatient beds in operation there while ensuring the safety of staff, volunteers, patients and families. There are 20 beds available for people across the whole of Coventry and Warwickshire and admissions have been extended to seven days a week.
Staff and visitors wearing PPE is the ‘new normal’, most of which has been donated by local businesses and individuals, and visitors are restricted to two per patient between 2pm and 7pm, to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Ninety-one-year-old Jean Williams was admitted to Coventry Myton Hospice on March 18, towards the start of the pandemic in the UK and is still being cared for there. Jean has terminal cancer and was referred by her palliative nurse for five days initially. Jean’s husband of 68 years, Sid, died three years ago and her son Clive, his wife Gillian and family live in Canada.
They talk to Jean twice daily on the phone and are kept updated by Myton’s doctors and nurses. Jean describes feeling safer at the hospice than at home and talks of “never having met such wonderful, compassionate people in all her life.”
Jean said staff were “wonderful, kind, caring, attentive and very professional. Not one person could be nicer from the doctors to the cleaners and everyone in between.”
Myton staff clapped and cheered when 71-year-old John Adams, who was admitted to Coventry Myton Hospice Covid-19 positive was discharged home Covid-19 free.
John has advanced bone and prostate cancer, and was admitted to Myton from University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire on April 12 for pain management.
Jon, who spent just over two weeks being cared for at Myton before going home, said: “I can’t thank the hospice enough for the care I received.”
CEO Ms Freeman said: “In these unprecedented and challenging times, as experts in palliative care and a much-relied on local charity, our front line staff continue to play a vital role in supporting the people of Coventry and Warwickshire and our NHS and healthcare colleagues. I would like to say a massive thank you to all of them. I am so proud and hearing feedback like this from patients highlights just how incredible they are. Despite being in the midst of a global pandemic their dedication hasn’t wavered and they have pulled together more than ever to look after our patients, families and each other.”
“As we enter a ‘new-normal’ our focus will continue to be providing the best palliative and end of life care, whilst working to ensure that services across all sites are sustainable for the future. This year we need to raise £9.2million to continue to provide our services free of charge and our ability to do this has been seriously impacted by the coronavirus outbreak, with approximately 80 per cent of our income affected.
“We have had to call on our local community and have been overwhelmed by their support. I want to thank everyone who has donated money, PPE, food, gifts, and sent in messages of encouragement for staff – we couldn’t do it without you.”
Visit www.mytonhospice.org/appeal to donate to The Myton Hospices fund-raising appeal.